VFW Magazine March 2015 : IFC
For people with a higher risk of stroke due to Atrial Fibrillation (AFib) not caused by a heart valve problem ELIQUIS ® (apixaban) is a prescription medicine used to reduce the risk of stroke and blood clots in people who have atrial ﬁ brillation, a type of irregular heartbeat, not caused by a heart valve problem. IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION: Do not stop taking ELIQUIS for atrial ﬁ brillation without talking to the doctor who prescribed it for you. Stopping ELIQUIS increases your risk of having a stroke. ELIQUIS may need to be stopped, prior to surgery or a medical or dental procedure. Your doctor will tell you when you should stop taking ELIQUIS and when you may start taking it again. If you have to stop taking ELIQUIS, your doctor may prescribe another medicine to help prevent a blood clot from forming. ELIQUIS can cause bleeding, which can be serious, and rarely may lead to death. You may have a higher risk of bleeding if you take ELIQUIS and take other medicines that increase your risk of bleeding, such as aspirin, NSAIDs, warfarin (COUMADIN ® ), heparin, SSRIs or SNRIs, and other blood thinners. Tell your doctor about all medicines, vitamins and supplements you take. While taking ELIQUIS, you may bruise more easily and it may take longer than usual for any bleeding to stop. Get medical help right away if you have any of these signs or symptoms of bleeding: -unexpected bleeding, or bleeding that lasts a long time, such as unusual bleeding from the gums; nosebleeds that happen often, or menstrual or vaginal bleeding that is heavier than normal -bleeding that is severe or you cannot control -red, pink, or brown urine; red or black stools (looks like tar) -coughing up or vomiting blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds -unexpected pain, swelling, or joint pain; headaches, feeling dizzy or weak ELIQUIS is not for patients with artiﬁ cial heart valves. Spinal or epidural blood clots (hematoma). People who take ELIQUIS, and have medicine injected into their spinal and epidural area, or have a spinal puncture have a risk of forming a blood clot that can cause long-term or permanent loss of the ability to move (paralysis).